15 May 2008

Vahana puja

Photo © The Hindu

From my window I can see my neighbours’ new car parked in their driveway. It’s a new model that I haven’t seen before. It has flower garlands decorating the front and an OM symbol painted on the windshield. This means they had a vahana (vehicle in Sanskrit) puja done, a special blessing done by a priest after a new car is purchased. This wards off the evil eye of envious neighbours and brings good luck on the roads.

Photo © The Hindu

Many car dealerships have their own in-house priests specially for this purpose. I see them lounging around in car showrooms dressed in saffron-coloured robes waiting for a new purchase to be made. The priest will bless the car and the driver by breaking a coconut, lighting camphor or incense, and chanting some prayers in Sanskrit. A small lime is placed in front of each tire and the driver then drives over them. I often see this happening in front of temples too.

Notice the limes in front of the tires! (Photo © The Hindu)

Lord Ganesh, the remover of obstacles, is always the most important passenger in every car. He takes a prominent place on the dashboard, removing any obstacles on the road ahead and ensuring a safe journey!


GMG said...

Amazing post! I've seen ships or planes blessed, but never cars... ;)
Have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

hey that's nice even cars have prayers, to have a better travel...nice post, very informative, keep it up...

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